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Debate on A75 Euroroute status post-Brexit

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By Fiona Reid
Annan and Eskdale
Debate on A75 Euroroute status post-Brexit

A QUESTION mark hangs over the future of the A75's 'Euro-route' status once 'Brexit' takes effect.

It comes after the UK’s Secretary of State for Transport Chris Grayling confessed he was unaware of the classification, and said he doubted it would be missed.
Asked in the House of Commons if he would support continuing that classification of the A75 once the UK leaves the European Union, Mr Grayling said: “I have to confess that I have never heard anyone in this country, north or south of the border, refer to an A road in the United Kingdom as a Euro-route.
“If they cease to be Euro-routes after we leave the European Union, I suspect that we will be able to count the number of people who miss that on the fingers of one hand.”
Dumfries and Galloway SNP MSP Richard Arkless had put the question to Mr Grayling, and says he is stunned by the response.
Mr Arkless said: “I was shocked that the Transport Secretary did not know or seem to care about the Euro-route designation of the A75.”
Claiming a ‘great deal of misunderstanding’ around Euro-route designations within the UK Government, plus a lack of appetite, he added: “Euro-routes are frequently considered EU routes.
“They are not; they are the designated main roads across the European continent and they provide easy access and identification for the haulage and fright industry.”
The A75 forms part of the international E-road, European route E18 which runs from Craigavon in Northern Ireland, through Scotland, Norway, Sweden and Finland before ending in St Petersburg, Russia.
Scotland only has a small number of roads that are designated Euro-routes, with the A75/E18 unique as it does not link to a major Scottish city.
Mr Arkless says Euro-route classification increases a road’s status and can be used to promote the area or push for further investment in the A75 — which is currently the focus of a campaign to dual the road and potentially create a southern bypass around Dumfries.
And Mr Arkless said: “That job is hard enough without being stripped of a useful international designation.”


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